Getting rid of dangerous toxic chemicals in your house and going green





I’ve been going green over the last few years. I’ve been swapping toxic chemical laden cleaners for natural alternatives, opting for reusable bags over plastic or paper, recycling and buying recycled.

I know that many people still think that going green is expensive or it is a hassle or that the products don’t work as well. But it is not!

Here are some of the things that I am doing and some of the products that I like.

One of the first things I did was to try and use reusable bags when I went shopping. At first, I tried using the store issued reusable bags sadly I found that I would forget the bags at home or in the car. So, I set off to find a more convenient bag. After trial and error I found the Envirosax bags. They are perfect, strong and large enough to haul a lot of groceries, but they are also small and lightweight I throw a few of them in my purse and even in my coat pockets so that I will always have a bag handy when I go shopping.

I was already recycling (it is the law in the city where I live…not to mention that the garbage men refuse to take your trash if there are too many recyclable items mixed in with the trash). I love the Simple Human trash can/recycle bin combo (and the biodegradable trash bags that they sell). I started wondering what happens to all of those recycled newspapers, bottles, and cans that I was carting out to the recycle bin each week. Well, it turns out they are turned into all sorts of new products like fleece clothing, toilet paper, wrapping paper, new packaging, counter tops and tile. I was on a quest to replace as many items in my house with the recycled versions.

I tried lots of different toilet papers, tissues and paper towels. Some were very hard and scratchy others were flimsy and didn’t hold up very well. I finally settled on the Seventh Generation Toilet Paper & Tissue it is not to scratchy and holds up well. The Seventh Generation Paper towels are pretty good too but I also like Whole Foods 365 brand paper towels.

I stopped using paper napkins completely…I have switched to fabric napkins. I like linen and cotton the best. My favorites are ivory linen from Sferra but I have an assortment from Williams & Sonoma that are real workhorses. I have a few sets of Chilewich placemats that can be wiped or rinsed clean.

It took me a little longer to switch over from using dangerous toxic chemical cleaning products to the greener versions. I was of the belief that the chemicals were necessary to clean but found that some of the green alternatives work just as well.

Dishes:

Mrs. Meyers Lemon Verbena Liquid Dish Soap
BioKleen Automatic Dish Powder
Bon Ami Scrubbing Powder

Laundry:

Bio Kleen All Temperature Laundry Liquid
Bio Kleen Bac Out (for spots & stains)
Mrs. Meyers Lavender Dryer Sheets (I tried using dryer balls but found that they made too much noise)
The Laundress (I use the wool & cashmere shampoo for my sweaters and the Delicate Wash wash for hand washables)

Kitchen & Bathroom and General Cleaning:

Seventh Generation Toilet Bowl Cleaner
baking soda mixed into a paste with white vinegar cuts thru the soap scum in the tub/shower and is great from polishing metal too
Seventh Generation Disinfecting Wipes
BioKleen Glass Cleaner
Seventh Generation and BioKleen All Purpose Cleaners

I use Dr. Bronners peppermint liquid castile soap in all of my hand soap dispensers.

Microfiber cloths work well for dusting and cleaning glass.

What are you using at home? Any products you like?

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